This was our first birding trip post marriage. Our original idea was to make a trip to the black buck sanctuary at Mydanahalli. Detailed Directions can be found here
The length and complexity of the route had me worried as did the fact that getting there, required asking directions from villagers and a knowledge of kannada to read sign boards.
Having never progressed beyond the first 17 alphabets, I think this is better left when my Dad is along to read the boards :) We were also told to go in a slightly larger group since getting lost is almost guaranteed.
We opted for Devarayana Durga instead, being very fond of it after our first visit. Starting at 4.45am we got there at 6:30am, stopping at times to see some birds. It was very overcast and drizzled all along.
We found the spotted owlet again on the same tree as we did last time. Also found some yellow billed babblers and the usual robins and bush chats.
The bad light and the drizzle made photography difficult. We parked at the little green building near the lake at the base of the hill. Sadly the lake's water level was quite high and we couldnt walk around it as we had done last time.
One friendly coppersmith made our day; posing patiently on a massive tree; while we struggled to locate it in a sea of green.
We saw an African Guinea Fowl among some chickens on the way, I wonder if it is being bred for meat?
Yellow billed babbler
Indian Robin (Male)
Grey Tits several
Coppersmith Barbets (4)
Red Vented bulbuls
Red whiskered bulbuls
White browed bulbuls (pair)
White browed Fantail (pair)
White breasted kingfisher
Hoopoe - 1
Small green bee eaters - several
Purple rumped Sun birds (pair)
Larks several - not sure of species
Small minivet (male and female)
White bellied Tree Pie - glance
Red wattled lapwings - 2
Red necked falcon - along the highway, on the way back
Where to fill fuel
Most of the stations we passed were closed in the morning and those that were open only filled diesel.
We filled at a station past the diversion to Devrayandurga( the big over bridge) on Tumkur Highway, cross Cafe Coffee Day. Another 6kms, it was on left of the road.
Marvelous for the most part, since the road has been recently laid.
For about 300 mts there is a very bad stretch watch out for it. It is just after the village having a Y joint ( the left turn at this junction takes ppl to some other place of pilgrimage, the right arm goes to Devrayandurga road.
Carry water and food, nothing is available along the way.
Bottled Water is available at the top, near the temple, as are few packaged snacks and cucumbers.
If the water level is down, there are 2 large rocks at the end of the lake on the leftside. Its a good place to have a picnic lunch.
Carry along an icepail, we tried it this time. It gets quite warm as the day progresses.
Boards are in english also, from Karnataka tourism and look nice and bright.
Directions (from Keshav)
Take Tumkur Road - (Cross Peenya - Nandi Corridor junction - Mangalore highway junction - toll gate)
About 15 to 20 kms after the toll gate, there is a huge overbridge that comes.
Take the immediate right after the getting down from the bridge - Take a U turn there, come along the side road of the bridge for another 500mts.
You will reach a market area, take a left U turn there. It cannot be missed. Continue on that road for about 17 kms to reach a village.
There is a Y junction there. Take the right arm of it. Travel another 1 km, there is a cement arch on the left indicating route to Devrayanduga there.
Take that, 2 kms on this road is the temple.